At 4/19/13 03:47 PM, ZeldaFreak701 wrote:
How did the tables get turned? How did having complete control and good stuff turn into having complete control and crap stuff?
The simple answer is that American Dad is significantly better than Family Guy ever was, even in its pre-cancellation prime, and you might be giving MacFarlane a little too much credit. Though to be fair (especially since I'm spending the rest of my post shitting on him) there are always a handful of good bits in even the worst episode of Family Guy, I really liked Ted, and I didn't think his Oscar hosting gig was the disaster everyone made it out to be. MacFarlane is a funny guy (and FWIW a pretty great voice actor) but he's very hit or miss and, more importantly, he has no restraint.
Family Guy isn't a fundamentally different show now than it was before it was cancelled, it's just that now MacFarlane and his writers have free reign to indulge their worst tendencies because the show is a huge juggernaut and nobody is going to say "no" to them. So we get all the cheap shock humor, the lazy pop culture references, the repetitive anti-jokes that go on and on for an interminable amount of time.
I also think (and for whatever reason this doesn't come up as often when people talk about the show) that Family Guy's runaway success over the past decade has inflated MacFarlane's ego to the point where rather than just pay homage to All in the Family in his show's opening credits (and in Peter and Lois's voices; hell, look at how much they're drawn to look like Edith and Archie Bunker in the show's original pilot from 1995), he now actually fancies himself the second coming of Norman Lear (which explains The Cleveland Show in the first place: it's MacFarlane's The Jeffersons).
So now because of that attitude Family Guy does all these bullshit "social issue" episodes where we're suddenly expected to take the characters seriously (when previously they had just been interchangeable joke dispensers) and become invested in whatever themes MacFarlane wants to discuss even though the show has done nothing to earn it. Really this is the biggest difference between "new" Family Guy and Family Guy pre-cancellation. Thing is, MacFarlane is no Norman Lear, and for every didactic "issue" episode that tries to shed a sobering light on some bigotry or injustice, there are literally dozens of jokes that baldly reinforce them.
Basically, the difference between then and now is that now MacFarlane has even more complete control, and he also seems to be under the impression that his show is important, which only makes things worse.
At 10/7/13 08:50 PM, CosmicRainbow wrote:
I think we should all know what show the jewel of the crown is by now.
Seriously. American Dad is brilliant. Too bad neither MacFarlane nor FOX recognize that and they're putting it out to pasture on TBS, while Family Guy is probably going to drag on forever like The Simpsons. Fuckers.